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Post-Gazette sports reporter Paul Zeise blogs about the world of sports, and Pittsburgh sports in particular, with an assist from Seth Rorabaugh and his Morning Links. Follow Paul on Twitter @PaulZeise and Seth @emptynetters.
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In addition to Jaromir Jagr and Maxime Talbot, the other ex-Penguins star involved on the "wrong" side of tonight's Penguins-Flyers game is Joe Mullen, currently an assistant with the Flyers.
Having coached in numerous games against the Penguins, this is nothing new for Mullen. Today he spoke about tonight's game, coaching against his former team and what Jagr has brought to his current team.
What do you anticipate tonight?
"It’s just another game. They’re all important. We try to take it one at a time. Work our hardest. We expect the same of them. You watch the scoreboard every night, they’re winning just as much anybody. We know how hard they play and how hard we need to play to beat them."
Is it strange to coach against a team which has your picture up on the wall for it's hall of fame?
"It’s fun coming into the building to see it, I’ll tell you that. I think there’s always an attachment there you always keep deep down in your heart. I think when I come into work, that’s my first priority. To come in and try to beat these guys."
Did you expect Jagr to produce as well as he has this season?
"Oh yeah. I don’t think Jaromir knew what to expect coming into this season, but him and (Claude) Giroux have really clicked. Pretty much carried us most of the season."
Are you surprised has has clicked as well as he has on a line with Giroux and Scott Hartnell?
"Not really. If you look at all the ingredients, it’s a good making for a good line. Jaromir is a big and strong. Can handle the puck. Got great skills. Can make those quick passes with Giroux. Giroux’s got the speed and the ability to carry the puck and make passes. Then Scott, he’s a big guy that goes to the net and works hard in the corners. It’s a good combination."
Did you have any role in scouting or recruiting Jagr to Philadelphia?
"No not really. They just signed him. It’s not hard to know what he does out there. If you’re watching, you know what he’s done in the past. Our scouts watched him over in Europe and knew what he could do in those leagues and the World Championships. It was no surprise he could come in a do the job."
(Photo: Penguins Hockey Cards)
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